A conservative personality
doesn't think that it can be done better (or is already being done better by others)
A progressive personality
believes it can be done better (or is already being done better by others) and has a favourite alternative.
A creative personality
has at least one original idea how to do it better.
None of them are necessarily correct, though all of them are at times correct.
Young officers tend to start out as a progressive/creative mix, but get so often rebuffed and rejected that most of them were hammered into shape for the conservative pattern by the time they actually get to decide how to do stuff.
Senior NCOs and senior officers tend to be so heavily indoctrinated that all-too often they become conservative and truly believe that the way they're doing things and were taught to do things is the only correct one. They may even see the symptoms of failure, but don't connect this with what's become dear to them about how things are being done.
Maybe the way to go is to make sure all creative people get their way once in a while (such as one major proposal accepted per quarter) in order to keep the spirit of ambition for improvement alive?